Today we enter week 4 of our challenge. This week your challenge is to daily share a GEM. What is a GEM, you ask… a Genuine Encounter Moment. Let me explain. Years ago I took a parenting class. I don’t even think Jack was born yet. One of my favorite things I learned in this class was the importance of sharing GEMs regularly.
Now fast-forward 11 years… I am just one of the many multi-tasking moms I know. We as women are always juggling so many things at once. Whether it’s our roles of mother, wife, daughter, friend, sister, co-worker…or chores of cooking, cleaning, shopping, changing diapers… or social pulls such as facebook, emails, iphones. We are BUSY!
How often are we only half listening to the kids stories. Or zoning out during a discussion with our spouse. Or partially being available as we check our facebook status…
I find in my coaching business, that we as women have a hard time being in the MOMENT. Right here, right now. Fully listening. Using and sharing GEMs will help us really connect. Fully be present. It’s quick, easy, and very powerful.
A GEM involves the following steps:
- Make friendly eye contact (if interacting with a child, get at eye level)
- Lovingly touch if possible
- Give your 100% focused attention
- Respond from the heart, not the head
The following is Dorothy Briggs description of GEMS in her book Your Child’s Self-Esteem: Genuine Encounter is simply focused attention. It is attention with a special intensity born of direct personal involvement. Once a day, pick someone to share a GEM with. Stop what you are doing. Make eye contact. Loving hold their hand or rub their back or pat their leg. Give 100% of your focus and respond from the heart, not the head.
In an article published in The New York Times, Tiffany Field, the director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine states, “Based on what we’ve seen, when we get more physical intimacy we get better relationships, whether a mother and an infant or a couple.”
… I challenge you to give one GEM away daily. Fully connect. Fully be present. Watch what a difference it makes in your day. No talking required. Fully give. You’ll find yourself more relaxed, more in the moment, and more willing to hear what the other person has to say. Good luck with this challenge.